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610 | Imitating the Master: Christ-modeled Self-compassion for Treating Anxiety in Emerging Adults

Saturday 9/16 8:45 – 10:00 AM, Workshop Tracks, Youth and Family Development: Issues and Interventions


Mollie Carter, Ph.D.; Jinni Leigh Blalack, M.A.



Approved For CE

Psychologists, Licensed Professional Counselors, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapists, Licensed Clinical Social Workers

Approved For CME/CEU

Medical Doctors, Osteopathic Doctors, Physicians Assistants, Midwives, Nurses and Nurse Practitioners




According to university counseling centers, anxiety is the most common presenting problem among emerging adult college students, with 60.8% presenting anxiety (AUCCCD Annual Survey, 2021). Self-compassion interventions are known to be effective at reducing anxiety in emerging adulthood (Dundas et al., 2017). Current self-compassion interventions are self-focused (Neff, 2003), but a shift in self-compassion to Christ-modeled self-compassion is appropriate for Christians as Jesus modeled kindness, common humanity, and contemplative responses to suffering, which are basic features of self-compassion. Shifting the focus of self-compassion from a self-serving one to a Christ-modeled one may still produce decreases in anxiety while changing the telos of the intervention from simply reducing anxiety to improving functioning for healthier living and relationships by following Christ’s example of humanity (Mitchell, 2003). This workshop will help psychologists, licensed mental health professionals, medical professionals, and ministry leaders have an introduction to a Christ-modeled self-compassion intervention and report on its efficacy on emerging adult anxiety and grit (Duckworth et al., 2007) based on a current study that concluded in April 2023.

Learning Objectives

1. Critique self-compassion, anxiety, and grit with current assessments and identify when self-compassion interventions are likely to be helpful
2. Outline examples of Jesus’ humanity that model compassion and proper responses to suffering that involve kindness, common humanity, and contemplative practices
3. Formulate ways to educate willing clients on the basics and goals of Christ-modeled self-compassion compared to current secular procedures and goals of self-compassion
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